Joel Grey Takes Audiences Behind the Scenes of His Yiddish Fiddler on the Roof

Video   Joel Grey Takes Audiences Behind the Scenes of His Yiddish Fiddler on the Roof
The director of the Off-Broadway hit and star Steven Skybell talk about the powerful new revival.
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Steven Skybell and ensemble Victor Nechay / ProperPix

Since it first opened downtown at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in the summer of 2018, the National Yiddish Theatre of Folksbiene’s production of Fiddler on the Roof has been causing a stir—so much so that it recently transferred to Off-Broadway’s Stage 42 in midtown.

In the video below, director Joel Grey (perhaps best known for his Tony- and Oscar-winning performance in Cabaret) and the production’s Tevye, Steven Skybell, take NBC 4 New York backstage.

“I think that everybody is taking away the strength of love and family and that terrible fear of being kicked out,” said Grey of the Yiddish-language production, which features English and Russian supertitles.

READ: Why Off-Broadway’s Fiddler on the Roof Is the Most Authentic Production You’ll See

“Putting it in Yiddish, it just slightly puts a different prism on it,” said Skybell. But the leading man also feels a personal connection to the story, and has hung photos of his ancestors around his dressing room to remind him of that closeness to the story.

READ: After a Lifelong Quest to Play Tevye, Steven Skybell’s Prayers Were Answered—But Not How He Thought

The production was recently nominated for four Lucille Lortel Awards: Outstanding Revival, Outstanding Director for Joel Grey, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical for Skybell, and Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical for Jackie Hoffman, who plays Yente.

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